Siddhartha Vaidyanathan

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Blog Posts by Siddhartha Vaidyanathan

  • He flashes, flashes hard

    The IPL final, as Ravi Shastri saw it.


    It’s 7:30PM on a steaming Sunday evening in Chennai and Ravi Shastri, standing in the middle of the Chidambaram Stadium, is all set to attend a wedding. Bedecked in a green sherwani and a white dupatta, whose lose ends kiss the Chepauk pitch, Shastri, microphone in hand, is about to empty his lungs and flex his larynx. Cricinfo’s ball-by-ball commentary describes what follows: “He [Shastri] hollers, for one last time this IPL season.”

    “Chennaaaaaai,” he yells as he towers over the two captains who are there for the toss. “This is what you’ve been waiting for. Time to whistle podu one final time.” This guttural pronouncement travels radially across the stadium’s turf and ends up as an acoustic six, the sound waves clearing the boundary rope and settling comfortably in the stands. The IPL final is officially declared open.

    Less than twenty hours earlier, Ravi Shastri turned fifty. When asked what he would do for his fiftieth birthday he had said, ‘ ... just knock one into the gap, quietly

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